Once An Abuser, Always An Abuser…

...or maybe not

Now, it’s no secret that I’m no fan of The Increasingly Bizarre Chris Brown.

He makes shitty music (calling him a “poor man’s Michael Jackson” is an insult to Micheal Jackson, poor men, and lazy analogies), has shitty roles in shitty movies (The shittiest?Takers” — aka “The Screen Version Of Every Hennessy Ad That Ever Made The Inside Front Cover Of The Source”), has shitty advisers, and hasn’t appeared the least bit contrite for that excessively shitty thing he did to Rihanna three years ago (Again, I don’t personally know him. But, from what I’ve seen, heard, and read, he acts as if he was actually the one victimized that night. And, for people who think that people like me need to “let it go,” I’ll let it go when he stops acting like the one who was victimized that night. Actually, “victimized” isn’t strong enough of a word. “Brutalized” is better. For those who think I’m using too much hyperbole, please read the article linked above. Now, shut the f*ck up.)

Despite all of this, Rihanna seems to have forgiven him. Which is (obviously) her choice. They also seem to be dating now. Well, publicly dating now. And, because of Rihanna’s past brutalization, many — myself included — believe that he will inevitably brutalize her again.

But, what if he doesn’t? What if he all of a sudden becomes a model boyfriend, perfect husband, and doting father? Would the second chance he’s received from her be justified, or is the decision inherently bad regardless of the outcome? I realize that the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior — and I do realize that serial abusers are called serial abusers for a reason — but just how I think Rihanna may be taking a very dangerous chance, we — people who assume he’ll beat her again — may be dangerously lazy with our thought process. How can we be so sure, so certain, that he will definitely beat her to a pulp again, especially when — to my knowledge¹ — that brutalization was the only time he abused her?

The Increasingly Bizarre Chris Brown and Rihanna’s star-crossed relationship aside, hearing stone cast beliefs such as like “once an abuser, always an abuser” and “once a cheater, always a cheater” never really sat right with me. They don’t account for any nuance. “Once a cheater, always a cheater” would make more sense if it were an addiction and/or caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain, but sometimes people cheat once and never cheat again. And, more importantly, those types of statements reek of something a group of “good” and “self-righteous” people (read: people like me) created in order to make sure that people who once did something bad are forever branded and never forgiven. It’s our way of making sure they’re not “rewarded” for not being good.

The Increasingly Bizarre Chris Brown may in fact be my 2nd least favorite entertainer of all-time (R. Kelly will forever hold the top spot on that list). I wouldn’t trade a hot bucket of cat piss for one of his albums. I also realize that Rihanna getting back with the man who publicly brutalized her sets a terrible example for her millions of young female (and male) fans; many of whom will look at their situation and think “Well, Rihanna took Breezy back, so a couple punches can’t be all that bad.

But, despite how I feel about him, can I say with any confidence that if he and Rihanna stay together, he will definitely abuse her again?

No, I can’t. And, since I can’t, I won’t.

¹I’m not super well-versed in Chrihanna news, so if there are any other documented instances of him abusing women that I haven’t heard about, please let me know

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)